The Netherlands – A Dutch firm of architects has undertaken a research project dubbed ‘Recycled island’ to assess the potential for creating a habitable floating island in the Pacific Ocean made from the plastic debris to be found there. According to the Rotterdam-based agency WHIM, the aim is to cleanse the oceans of a large volume of plastic waste while at the same time creating a new land space.
The largest concentration of plastic is located in the North Pacific Gyre and has the same footprint as France and Spain combined. The project team wants to create an island covering 10 000 square kilometres – roughly the same size as Hawaii which lies to the south west of the Gyre. By siting the island at the point of maximum plastics concentration, transportation of material would be avoided; but because the proposed island will ‘float’, its position could ultimately be altered.
The project is supported by the Dutch National Fund for Architecture.